Miya Evans is 12 years old, and she hasn't ever said a single word. She could, maybe, if she wanted to, but she has never tried. Along with dealing with a crazy mother who has never understood her, Miya has other problems. Who is the new kid at school? Shy and polite, Miya knows that this can be her very first friend. But how to befriend this mysterious new girl without stepping out of her comfort zone? Answer is easy she can't. So Miya can either take her first step into an unknown world to her, or stay hidden in the dark, where she has always been.


2. Books



Chapter 2: Books



The thing that most people don't get about me (besides my muteness) is my liking for books. Of course they all only notice I'm reading when I am reading the book the first time, which is from, of course, the physical book. But even though only about 10% of my reading is from the actual book (as opposed to my BOOK file), I still 'read' more than anybody I know.

Although I don't pay much attention to other people, so that isn't saying much. My mom is always saying, "Miya, get your nose out of that book and go watch TV." From what I know about normal people, this must seem awesome. But for someone who's life is in a book, it's just annoying.

Today my new book was The Angel Experiment, by James Patterson. You should know that when I am in 'new book' mode, I am pretty much oblivious to the world around me. Until Mom comes up to me and yells in my ear, "Miya! Go play outside!" and I instantly flinch. Like I said earlier, I hate loud sounds.

Mom shook her head in wonderment and walked away. Good. I kept 'reading' until my little white alarm clock went off in the kitchen. I stood up and unwillingly opened my eyes. I have an alarm set for almost everything: Mom's arrival, mealtimes, curfew, and wake-up times.

Right now the alarm was a loud and demanding Bing-Bing-BING!, which was my alarm for meals. I had it set for exactly 4;00, because I am always very punctual. I stood up and bookmarked (you know what I mean) the page I was at in my book. I walked out my doorway and into the kitchen, where my little sister Kira sat.

I love Kira. She is my favorite (and only) sister, and she's a much better sister than I've heard that the other girls' at school's are. 1st of all, she doesn't mind my muteness. She understands I don't talk for whatever reason and gets on with her life. She doesn't care that all I ever do is close my eyes and Remember; although, she would only know this as trying to fall asleep.

Kira is always waiting for me to come out into the kitchen every Friday. She never disturbs me while I'm in my 'week-end zone', but she figured out that I come out for dinner at 4:00, so there she always sits, waiting.

I smiled a tiny bit at her as I came over to sit on the wooden stool next to her. She had prepared my favorite meal: strawberry salad. The only reason she knew it was my favorite is she as attentive enough to realize that I ate it every day, so she was nice enough to make it for me.

I smiled a tiny little bit that only Kira would be able to see. Her face immediately broke into a huge grin, which was rather cute now that she had a gap where one of her front teeth used to be. The tooth fairy gave her some big bucks for that sucker. She seemed to catch me staring because she began feeling over the now empty space in her mouth with her tongue, as if it might have grown back in already. When she was positive that it hadn't mysteriously popped back into her mouth over dinner, she smiled that big adorable smile I loved.

I picked up the fork that Kira had put out for me and began to eat my salad. First the strawberries, and then all of the other stuff people would consider normal to eat on a salad. I don't particularly like lettuce, but strawberry salad is another way to eat strawberries in a way where nobody thinks you are obsessed with the food or anything, so I eat it gratefully.

Kira, like any other 8 year old, can't sit still for more than 2 minutes, max. She began figitting in her seat, looking at me hopefully all the time. I nodded my head the tinsiest bit to let her know that it was okay to go and do whatever normal 8 year olds do on a Friday evening.

Kira, being her perceptive self, noticed my nod and grinned uncertainly in response. She hopped off the chair and did a beeline for her room. I smiled a little to myself. Where did little kids get all of their energy?

I ate my meal very slowly, but still I got done far too soon for my taste. When Mom saw me not doing 'anything', I guess it would seem from her perspective, she always went into another one of her mental breakdowns. I really don't appreciate emotions that much, so I try to keep busy.

After thoroughly washing all of my dishes, I went into my room totry and find something to do besides Remember. I decided on cleaning my room. See, for messes in general, I have a system worked out. Mom always used to throw a fit if everything I owned was in perfect order all of the time, like a spare room where nobody lives. I know from listening from kids at school that their parents were always getting on them about their dirty room. I guess my mom hasn't got the memo that clean rooms are good.

But I wasn't about to explain that to her, so I just worked out a schedule. Every Tuesday and Friday I clean my room, and every other day I make a concious effort to put things out of place. Like every other time I change I lay one of the dirty outfits on the floor. And I make sure that every morning that my bed stays unmade and messy.

Honestly, I don't know how normal people live like this.

When I walked into my room, my OCD alarm was beeping like crazy. I felt like my head was about to explode. For me, my room was an absolute disaster zone. For any other normal person looking at it, it would look as if the room had recently been cleaned, vacuumed, and dusted. I had some serious work to do.

I started on the floor. I'd heard strategies at school for room cleaning, and one of the best places to hide junk is under your bed. I dug out old clothes and shoes out from under there, and put them all in their proper places.

After triple checking that nothing unsanitary remained under the place I sleep at night, I moved to my closet. Clothes were dangling loosely from the hangers that Mom assumed I wouldn't care if she got me the crappy ones. I suppose I really don't, but it does still get annoying. I made sure not one piece of clothing was not hanging perfectly straight off the hangers.

Then I moved to my bookcase. That was the most nightmarish place in my room of all, in my opinion. All of the books were stacked on top each other. I always saved this part for last because a little part of me died every time I saw my precious books abused like this. And it was MY FAULT. I quickly took all of my fragile books from the wooden bookcase and put them down gently on the carpet. I then arranged them in alphabetical order of author and then title, and neatly placed them upright on the shelves.

When I was done, I stood up and looked around my room. Spotless. As if no one lived here. And that's how I like it.

I sigh, knowing that tomorrow I would have to start messing up this room again. I wonder if normal people get depressed over the thought of a messy room. I don't think so, but with 'normal' people, we can only guess.

Suddenly, my door swings open. It cashes against the wall, and I flinch away from the noise.When I see her face, I am instantly grateful I decided not to Remember today. My mom stood rigid in the doorway, looking as though she was expecting me to try and cover up a dead body. She scanned the room with her stressed green eyes, and then they fell on me. She recognized that my eyes were not glazed over, so I wasn't 'being an abnormal child', as she would put it.

"Well, it's not normal," she muttered to herself, seeming to think I couldn't understand her. This is how she usually talks to me. Mom turned stiffly out of the door and left, not even having to say that she wished she had caught me Remembering.

That seems weird to me. Mom goes out of her way to try and catch me doing something strange, but then throws a fit when she finds me doing it. If I ever talk, it is going to be while giving my Mom a lecture on parenting.

I would give one to Dad too, but he never stays home long enough to notice me. For all he cares, I am an unnecessary take up of space in his house. Or just using up useful oxygen other people could be using. At least Mom acknowledges me; not always in a good way, but it's better than nothing.

My eyebrows pulled together as I felt a weird emotion spread though my body. Had never felt it before, it took me a minute to pin it down. I was feeling invisible, ignored.

Strange, I thought to myself. I'd always loved being ignored, put in the back round. But now I wanted to be seen? I shuddered at the thought of walking up to someone and communicating with them. Ughh. I was going insane.

To calm myself, I lay down on my bed and did a relaxing exercise Ms. Wonder had taught me. Big breath in. . . . slowly let it out. Breath in. . . .breathe out. Breath in. . . .breathe out.

Next thing I knew, I was in a dark gray room with hundreds of doors, waiting for my choice. That was easy. I walked slowly toward the one on my right and rested my hand one the metal doorknob. I twisted it easily, and stepped into the world awaiting me.


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